6 September 2015
F1 Italian Grand Prix: Emotional Hamilton revels in ‘fantastic race’
Lewis Hamilton describes his feelings on an afternoon that appeared to be a walk in the park, and ended with him spraying champagne over a sea of fans...
UPDATED: Hamilton declared winner after stewards investigation into tyre pressure irregularities. No action taken.
Lewis Hamilton has lauded his Mercedes team for providing him with the perfect car to pull off an emphatic victory in the Italian Grand Prix, praising all involved for their attention to detail over the past two years.
Already well-known for his gratitude-laden comments, the Briton was particularly effusive as he took in his third win at Mona which, ironically, allies to the retirement of team-mate Nico Rosberg to extend his championship lead to 53 points.
Having topped every session throughout the weekend, Hamilton cruised from lights to flag to claim his seventh win the 2015 season, denying the tifosi the Ferrari success they craved as he opened out a 25secs gap to second-placed Sebastian Vettel over the 53 laps.
“The race was fantastic,” he enthused, “I think we all got a difficult start but Sebastian was very fair into turn one and, after that, it was about chipping away, looking after the tyres, whilst trying to increase the gap to the cars behind.
“I was generally able to control it after that and felt comfortable. The car balance I really got perfect for the race – perhaps not so for qualifying, but perfect for the race – and it was actually one of my favourite balances of the whole year.
“This whole weekend has been just fantastic. It has been a perfect weekend for me – I've never had a weekend like this – [but] I couldn't have done it without my team. This team is just remarkable and what we have achieved together is just so special. I'm really incredibly grateful to them for working so incredibly hard through the weekend, through the last weeks, the last year, to give me the car that I had today.
“I have to take my hat off to them – I can't thank them enough for the constant attention to detail and improvements they have been doing back at the factory in Brackley and Brixworth. I've never seen it before!”
Winning at Monza is special to Hamilton, who has now done it with two teams, but he admits he could not understand why his got some urgent messages from the team in the closing stages.
“In the last few laps, I got told to push and I'm thinking 'I've got quite a big gap already', so I was a little bit taken aback by it – but, nonetheless, I managed to pull it out and do what they asked me to do.
“This circuit is a special one for me, and I think it's the same for all the drivers. When you stand on top of that podium, you have tremendous pride and feel very proud to be amongst the greats that have stood up there. And to see a sea of fans, a lot of them in red, it is unlike anything I have ever seen. It is very emotional when you are up there...”
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